A Brief Introduction To Agricultural Science

DEFINITION OF AGRICULTURE

Agriculture is the cultivation of crops and production of animals for human use.

IMPORTANCE OF AGRICULTURE TO NATIONAL ECONOMY

Agriculture plays important roles in the development of the nation and its economy, such roles include:-

PROVISION OF FOOD

Agriculture provides food for the citizens, it ensures a well fed population and this encourages the citizens to work in different field and sectors for the overall growth of the nation’s economy.

PROVISION OF RAW MATERIALS FOR INDUSTRIES

Agriculture provides different types of raw materials for industries; these raw materials are used in production of goods that are sold to the citizens for their use.

This reduces the rate of importation and aid the growth of the economy. The raw materials include fiber, hide and skin, cotton, wood pulp, cocoa, rubber etc,

PROVISION OF EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Agriculture provides employment for significant proportion of Nigeria population, it has been estimated that over 70% of Nigeria population are engaged in agriculturally based occupation.

Employment opportunities provided by agriculture enables workers to earn their living and contributes in their own different ways to the development of the nation.

SOURCE OF FOREIGN EXCHANGE

Agriculture brings about exchange of currency between Nigeria and other countries through exportation of agricultural produce.

This type of exchange of currency earns Nigeria foreign currencies with which we can trade with other countries. This type of trade (International trade) leads to the growth of Nigeria economy.

SOURCE OF REVENUE TO GOVERNMENT

Agriculture serves as source of revenue for government. Farmers pay their taxes, grading fee, license free e.t.c and government uses the fund in provision of basic amenities and infrastructures for the citizens, Government still realize some money from amenities and infrastructure provided and this improves our economy.

SOURCE OF INCOME TO FARMERS  

Agriculture provides money for the farmers, when farmers sells their produce they get money to live good life, pay children’s school fees e.t.c.

This improves their lives and improve the economy as well.

AGRICULTURE PROVIDES MARKET FOR INDUSTRIAL PRODUCT

Agriculture provides markets for some of the products produced by industries, these products are used for agricultural production they include fertilizer, pesticides, herbicides, tractor, incubator e.t.c.

BRANCHES/AREAS OF SPECIALISATION IN AGRICULTURE

1.   CROP PRODUCTION

2.   ANIMAL PRODUCTION

3.   SOIL SCIENCE

4.   AGRICULTURAL ENGINEERING

5.   AGRICULTURAL EDUCATION

6.   FISHERY

7.   FORESTRY

8.   AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS

9.      HORTICULTURE


TYPES OF AGRICULTURE

There are two types of agriculture:

1.           SUBSISTENCE AGRICULTURE

Subsistence agriculture is a form of agriculture where the farmer cultivates mainly for the consumption of himself and his immediate family with little or nothing for sale.

CHARACTERISTICS OF SUBSISTENCE AGRICULTURE

1.   Small area/size of land is required

2.   Labour is supplied by farmer and his family

3.   It involves little capital

4.   Simple farm tools are used for cultivation

5.   The yield/harvest is low

2.           COMMERCIAL AGRICULTURE

This is a type of agriculture where the farmer cultivates mainly for sale and to make profit

CHARACTERISTICS OF COMMERCIAL AGRICULTURE

1.   It requires large areas /size of farm land

2.   The farmer makes use of hired and skilled labour

3.   Output /yield is very high

4.   It involves a lot of money

5.   Modern implements are used

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